We started converting two of the old squash courts into a studio in 1994. It took years, but the real dirty big job was taking down the wall. After six months of planning and preparation almost 40 people – friends, family, and colleagues came and helped demolish the double skin besser brick wall over two weekends in March 1995 (see pics below). This involved moving 11 tonnes of bricks – the wall was 20 foot high and went down below floor level. It was load bearing at one end so a steel beam was then put up one wall and the roof truss had an extension welded into it according to the specifications of a structural engineering report. Tie rods were also inserted across the ceiling to ensure building stability should there ever be a hurricane. We found a source of the narrow double thickness Tasmanian oak floorboards to fill in where the wall had been and match the original
Over the next few years, a door entrance was cut out so the doorway was no longer a tiny squash court door, the walls were painted white over the thousands of light black crescent marks from squash balls, the ceiling was painted by a couple of long suffering volunteers on scaffolding towers. The huge hot water storage system for 9 showers was removed from the upper balcony, and eventually the upper north wall was opened up and large windows put in. Various efforts to stop the rain running down the interior walls and through holes in the roof were more or less successful too. More recently we made the staircase and polished the floor and funnily enough just at that moment someone kindly offered to lend us a baby grand piano.